Pros and Cons: Telemarketing
Telemarketing (also known as a phone-a-thon) takes individual solicitation a step further by having many people use the phones to ask for money.
- It shares with individual solicitation the key ingredient of personal contact.
- It allows you to deliver individual messages to specific people at an affordable cost.
- When a telephone campaign is properly used with selected lists, the pledge rate can be as much as 10 to 12 times that of direct mail.
- You can turn the phoning into a campaign which is festive and fun for the telemarketers. People will catch the excitement from others and be more motivated to call than would one person alone.
- Not everyone who pledges money over the phone delivers. You can expect that up to 20% of people making pledges will not pay them.
- Phone solicitors must be knowledgeable about your organization and trained in telemarketing techniques. This training and orientation can be expensive and time-consuming.
- Telemarketing has become so sophisticated that you will probably need to hire a consultant who specializes in telemarketing.
- If telemarketers are not tactful and pleasant, they will do more harm than good.
- Some potential donors feel that phone calls are intrusive and are put off by them.
TIPS TO REMEMBER
- Have a precise, achievable objective for your telemarketing call. Prepare a script.
- Develop a carefully thought out plan for achieving the desired results.
- Get thank-you notes out promptly with a stamped return envelope. Prompt follow-up is essential if you
expect to collect the money people have pledged.
- You can increase your results dramatically by having people of stature in your community or industry make your calls.
- The key to successful telemarketing is to use it as just one piece of a total marketing and fundraising strategy.
- The most successful telemarketing campaigns combine advertising and direct mail appeals with telemarketing. Use market tests to discover the best combination for your organization.